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India's Ashok Leyland beats Q3 profit view on lower costs, higher demand

BENGALURU (Reuters) - Indian truck maker Ashok Leyland Ltd beat third-quarter profit estimates on Monday, helped by reduced costs and increased demand for its trucks and buses.

Standalone profit rose 60.5% from the previous year to 5.8 billion rupees ($69.9 million) for the three months ended Dec. 31, surpassing analysts' estimate of 5.51 billion rupees, according to LSEG data.

Revenue from operations rose 2.7% to 92.73 billion rupees. However, it fell 3.8% from the previous quarter.

Industry data showed that sales of commercial vehicles (CV) in India grew 3.5% in the third quarter, down from 6.9% in the previous three months.

Analysts believe that the buoyancy in truck demand, which began in 2022, will sustain, as historical trends indicate that demand upturns typically last four to five years on average in India.

The positive cycle for medium and heavy commercial vehicles will continue, backed by infrastructure spends by the government, they added.

The cost of materials and services consumed, which constituted the majority of total expenses, fell 9%, boosting the Hinduja Group flagship company's bottom line.

The company, which held the third-largest market share of CV original equipment manufacturers for all three months of the third quarter, closed up 3% on Monday ahead of results announcement.

($1 = 83.0330 Indian rupees)

(Reporting by Meenakshi Maidas in Bengaluru; Editing by Dhanya Ann Thoppil)